Development and test of the Perceived Accessibility Scale (PAC) in public transport

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

ridership - perceptions, planning - service improvement, planning - surveys


Perceived accessibility, Accessibility, Public transport, Accessibility scale


Perceived accessibility, defined as “how easy it is to live a satisfactory life using the transport system”, is proposed to be a complementary measure to conventional, objective measures of accessibility. Aiming at capturing the subjective element of accessibility, as opposed to conventional accessibility that is based on the same objective attributes for large areas or groups of people, the authors developed and tested a measure of perceived accessibility; the four items self-reported Perceived Accessibility Scale (PAC). In study 1, 237 users of public transport rated PAC. The results showed that PAC is a reliable measure. The PAC was further validated and proved reliable in two waves (study 2) in altered conditions (Wave 1, N = 246, Wave 2, N = 259). Based on this, an overall PAC index was constructed. PAC can be used to determine the traveler's (or possible travelers) opinion of accessibility in transport planning or accessibility-mapping, or for directing interventions aimed at improving accessibility to where they are best needed according to the individuals. Further development of the PAC and its potential within transport research and planning, and its future validation is discussed.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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